Latest Information (April 21, 2020):

Due to the uncertainties associated with the current corona virus pandemic, we have decided to cancel the workshop. We hope to hold the workshop at a later date either this year or next year. We will keep the workshop website up-to-date to inform interested participants about the development.

Summary of the workshop

This workshop provides the theoretical background, as well as hands-on training in R, for the application in psychology and the social sciences of some of the most popular and broadly-applicable nonlinear analyses methods. Specifically, we will focus on the following methods: (Cross-)Recurrence Quantification Analyses ((C-)RQA), Fractal Analysis (FA), and Convergent Cross-Mapping (CCM).

RQA has a broad applicability, allowing the analysis of quantitative and qualitative changes in time-series and sequences, the analysis of coupling properties between two or more systems, as well as the analysis of multidimensional time-series.
FA allows to analyze fractal scaling relations and long-memory properties of time-series.
CCM is a method to analyze the strength and direction of influence among two time-series allowing the construction of a causal network between a set of variables.

In the social and behavioral sciences, these methods are useful for studying systems with nonlinear time evolution because they do not make strong assumptions about the data and allow to capture complex temporal patterns. They have been particularly useful for the analysis of time-series data from naturalistic settings and semi-experimental studies, investigations of response times, as well as the analysis of joint-action data in order to quantify group-dynamics such as synchrony and coupling between individuals, as well as leader-follower relationships.

Participants are welcome to bring their own data, which they can analyze during the training sessions or together with the instructors at the end of the workshop.

Basic knowledge of R is necessary, such as loading or saving data and performing basic operations on the command line. No previous knowledge of the methods discussed in the workshop is assumed. Note that participants will need to bring their own laptop in order to participate. If you are not familiar with R, we recommend working through a tutorial beforehand (e.g.,

Instructors and teaching assistants

Sebastian Wallot, PhD
Sebastian Wallot is a senior researcher at the Department of Language and Literature at the Max Planck Institute for Empirical Aesthetics, Frankfurt am Main, Germany. He got his PhD in experimental psychology from the University of Cincinnati, OH, USA and worked as postdoctoral research at the Interacting Minds Centre, Aarhus University, Denmark. His research focusses on reading, particularly the relation between reading process characteristics and comprehension, joint action, and the development of and application of nonlinear time-series analyses.

Prof. Dan Mønster
Originally trained as a physicist, Dan Mønster now directs Cognition and Behavior Lab at Aarhus University, Denmark. He is Associate Professor at the Department of Economics and Business Economics where he teaches mathematics, and is part of the Interacting Minds Centre. His research focuses on interpersonal dynamics in group cooperation, using both linear and nonlinear methods to analyze behavioral and physiological data from controlled experiments. Dan has contributed to algorithms for nonlinear analysis and R packages.

Prof. Giuseppe Leonardi
During his doctorate in experimental psychology, which he completed in Trieste, Italy, he studied applications of Dynamical System Theory to psychology and spent two years at the Center for Complex Systems at Florida Atlantic University, USA. He specializes in dynamical analyses of naturalistic human interactions, with a focus in Recurrence Quantification Analysis. He is now director of the psychology program at the University of Economics and Human Sciences in Warsaw, Poland.

Prof. Ralf Cox
Ralf Cox is currently associate professor at the Developmental Psychology group of the Department of Psychology of the University of Groningen, Netherlands. He received his PhD in Social Sciences at the Radboud University Nijmegen, Netherlands, in 2007. His research addresses the coordinative basis of behavior, cognition and their development. This entails a micro-genetic and complex dynamical systems approach to intra- and interpersonal coordination, as well as the advancement of nonlinear time-series techniques to study this. He has published on motor performance, planning, language development, dyslexia, mother-child, client-therapist and peer interaction, and gesture-speech attunement.

Monika Tschense, M.A.
During her studies, Monika Tschense acquired a background in linguistics with foci on (neuro-) cognition of language and speech-language pathology. Since November 2018 she is a PhD student and researcher within the third-party funded project “Reading time regularity” at the Max Planck Institute for Empirical Aesthetics in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. The project aims to explore to what extent nonlinear measures of time-series data are suitable for predicting text comprehension. To this end, together with Sebastian Wallot, Monika investigates behavioral measures (reaction times, eye movements) as well as electrophysiological correlates of natural reading.


Day 1

9:30–10:30Introduction: Why nonlinear methods
Theory and example applications of nonlinear analyses in psychology
10:30–11:00Coffee Break
11:00–12:30Basics of Recurrence Quantification Analysis
Introduction to Recurrence Plots; Introduction to phase-space reconstruction;
Hands-on: selecting embedding parameters
12:30–13:30Lunch on your own
13:30–15:00Cross-Recurrence Quantification Analysis I
Introduction to CRQA;
Hands-on: CRQA with continuous and nominal data
15:00–15:30Coffee Break
15:30–17:00Cross-Recurrence Quantification Analysis II
Introduction to leader-follower analysis using diagonal cross-recurrence profiles (DCRPs); 
Hands-on: calculating DCRPs

Day 2

9:00–10:30Chromatic and anisotropic Cross-Recurrence Quantification Analysis
Introduction to the analyses of matches between two categorical time-series
10:30–11:00Coffee Break
11:00–12:30Multidimensional Recurrence Quantification Analysis
Introduction to MdRQA;
Hands-on: using MdRQA on group (n > 2) data, and analysis of different intra-group levels
12:30–13:30Lunch on your own
13:30–15:00Multidimensional Cross-Recurrence Quantification Analysis
Introduction to MdCRQA;
Hands-on: using MdCRQA to correlate two multidimensional time-series
15:00–15:30Coffee Break
15:30–17:00Sample parameter estimation for Recurrence-Based Analyses
Best practices: choosing embedding parameters and follow-up statistical analyses;
Hands-on: dealing with a sample of time-series data

Day 3

9:00–10:30Practice session: Using Recurrence-based analysis on different data types
10:30–11:00Coffee Break
11:00–12:30Convergent Cross-Mapping
Introduction to CCM; Constructing causal networks between a set of variables
12:30–13:30Lunch on your own
13:30–15:00Practice session: Using Convergent Cross-Mapping
15:00–15:30Coffee Break
15:30–17:00Basics of Fractal Analysis
Introduction to fractals; Introduction to fractal geometry and scaling relations

Day 4

9:00–10:30Practice Session: Fractal Analysis
10:30–11:00Coffee Break
11:00–12:30Fractal Analysis and Beyond
Overview over methodological extensions and research applications
12:30–13:30Lunch on your own
13:30–15:00Wrap-up / Q&A / Analyze your own data
Final remarks and goodbye;
Analyze your own data with the help of the instructors
15:00–15:30Coffee Break
15:30–17:00Analyze your own data 
Continue analyzing your own data with the help of the instructors


Participation in the workshop is for free, but you will need to cover costs for accommodation and travel yourself. Moreover, we can assist a limited number of participants in covering costs for travel and lodging. You can indicate if you need travel assistance in your application for registration (see link below).

If you want to register for the workshop, please use to following link:

Here, we ask to answer a few questions about your expertise (which are only for the instructor to get a sense of the audience), write a brief motivational statement why you want to participate, and upload a CV of no more than 2 pages.

The number of participants is limited to 30. If we receive more applications for registration than there are slots, participants will be selected based on their motivational statement and their CV.

Registration: tbd


There are no reservations pre-arranged. However, we recommend the following options. Note that you will need to walk or take public transportation to reach the conference venue.

Accommodation within walking distance:

Favored Hotel Scala

Moxy Frankfurt City Center

Paulaner am Dom

Hotel Mondial

Other hotels:

Royal Hotel Frankfurt

Hotel Maingau

Hotel Arena am Zoo

Star Apart Hotel Sachsenhausen

Travel Information for Public Transportation to Conference Venue

Please check whether you will need a visa for Germany! Applying for and obtaining the visa is your own responsibility. If you need an invite to get a visa, please indicate so in the application form.

GENERAL: How to purchase a train ticket:
You have to purchase a ticket on a machine with German or English as operating languages.  Those machines are placed in the entrance areas of the station, usually before you are taking stairs down to the train platforms. Just click “Einzelfahrt Frankfurt” or “Single trip Frankfurt” for an adult.

For information on how to get to the institute, see: Contact and directions


Monika Tschense
Sebastian Wallot

If you have questions about the workshop, please contact


If you want to register for the workshop, please use to following link:

Registration: tbd

Workshop Location

Max Planck Institute for Empirical Aesthetics
Grüneburgweg 14
60322 Frankfurt am Main, Germany

How to get there

Preparation & Materials

R packages needed:

  • tseriesChaos
  • nonlinearTseries
  • sparseM 
  • ggplot
  • crqa

...and all their dependencies.

Also check out

Recurrence Plots and Cross Recurrence Plots

Coco, M. I. & Dale, R. (2014). Cross-recurrence quantification analysis of categorical and continuous time series: an R package. Frontiers in Quantitative Psychology and Measurement, 5, 510. 

Wallot, S. (2017). Recurrence Quantification Analysis of Processes and Products of Discourse: A Tutorial in R. Discourse Processes, 54, 382-405.

Wallot, S., & Leonardi, G. (2018). Analyzing multivariate dynamics using cross-recurrence quantification analysis (crqa), diagonal-cross-recurrence profiles (dcrp), and multidimensional recurrence quantification analysis (mdrqa)–a tutorial in r. Frontiers in psychology, 9, 2232.